IMG_2256There was once a time when summer TV shows were an endless string of reruns. In the summertime, we got to see Barney Fife yell, “Citizens Arrest, Citizens Arrest” one more time. Summer TV has evolved into an era with fewer reruns.

Instead, TV in the summer has become an endless string of big brothers, bachelorettes, ninjas, game nights, feuds and a continuous search for Americans with talent and comedians who can be the last standing. Perhaps this is more a regression than evolution.

There was also once a time when Late Night Talk Shows were always live. When Johnny Carson needed a 4 week vacation back in the day, he brought in a guest host and the live show went on, sometimes awkwardly. If you remember singer John Denver hosting the Tonight Show and saying “Far Out” 57 times in a 90 minute show, raise your hand.

Late Night Talk Shows have now become the summer shows with reruns. Oddly, while it is still called the “The Tonight Show”, we are often viewing the Yesterday Night Show or The Show From a Few Months Back. And, as heart-breaking as it may seem, Jimmy Kimmel Live is just not live for many nights in the summer folks.

This brings an awkward situation where the viewer is watching a monologue in July and hearing jokes about the Cleveland Cavaliers game in June. Or better yet, watching actors in a May interview plugging their yet to be released “smash hit” that turned out to be a bomb, like Clooney plugging Tomorrowland. Did you see Tomorrowland? Neither did I, or many other movie goers for that matter. It lost an estimated 100 million dollars.

But that’s the world we live in these days. Live is not live sometimes in summer. Reality shows replace reruns sometimes in summer.

This brings to mind the statement of one Heraclitus of Ephesus who was as a 485 B.C. finalist in the summer theater replacement show known today as “The Last Philosopher Standing.” Heraclitus said, “Change is the only constant in life.” In ancient Greece, this roughly translates to, “If you don’t like the show, change the channel.”

Oddly, nobody actually won “The Last Philosopher Standing” competition in 485 B.C. since none of the judges could decide the meaning of “Standing”.